Molding, Coremaking, and Casting Machine Setters, Operators, and Tenders, Metal and Plastic

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About the Job

Set up, operate, or tend metal or plastic molding, casting, or coremaking machines to mold or cast metal or thermoplastic parts or products.

It is also Called

  • Rotor Casting Machine Operator
  • Remelter
  • Reclamation Kettle Tender
  • Punch Molder
  • Production Technician
  • Process Technician
  • Presser
  • Press Operator
  • Preform Machine Operator
  • Polymerization Oven Tender
View All

What They Do

  • Assemble shell halves, patterns, and foundry flasks, and reinforce core boxes, using glue, clamps, wire, bolts, rams, or machines.
  • Shape molds to specified contours, using sand, and trowels and related tools.
  • Skim or pour dross, slag, or impurities from molten metal, using ladles, rakes, hoes, spatulas, or spoons.
  • Pull level and toggle latches to fill molds, to regulate tension on sheeting, and to release mold covers.
  • Clamp metal and plywood strips around dies or patterns to form molds.
  • Pour or load metal or sand into melting pots, furnaces, molds, or hoppers, using shovels, ladles, or machines.
  • Preheat tools, dies, plastic materials, or patterns, using blowtorches or other equipment.
  • Spray, smoke, or coat molds with compounds to lubricate or insulate molds, using acetylene torches or sprayers.
  • Mix and measure compounds, or weigh premixed compounds, and dump them into machine tubs, cavities, or molds.
  • Trim excess material from parts, using knives, and grind scrap plastic into powder for reuse.


People who work in this occupation generally have the interest code: RCI.

This means people who work in this occupation generally have Realistic interests, but also prefer Conventional and Investigative environments.

Work Values

People who work in this occupation generally prize Support, but also value Relationships and Independence in their jobs.

Things They Need to Know

  • Production and Processing - Knowledge of raw materials, production processes, quality control, costs, and other techniques for maximizing the effective manufacture and distribution of goods.
  • Mechanical - Knowledge of machines and tools, including their designs, uses, repair, and maintenance.
  • Mathematics - Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
  • English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
  • Administration and Management - Knowledge of business and management principles involved in strategic planning, resource allocation, human resources modeling, leadership technique, production methods, and coordination of people and resources.

Things They Need to Be Able to Do

  • Operation Monitoring - Watching gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly.
  • Active Listening - Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
  • Operation and Control - Controlling operations of equipment or systems.
  • Monitoring - Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
  • Reading Comprehension - Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
  • Critical Thinking - Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
  • Speaking - Talking to others to convey information effectively.

Education Required

These occupations usually require a high school diploma.


In 2016, the average annual wage in Pennsylvania was $34,830 with most people making between $21,610 and $50,480


avg. annual growth

During 2014, this occupation employed approximately 6,420 people in Pennsylvania. It is projected that there will be 5,340 employed in 2024.

This occupation will have about 0 openings due to growth and about 100 replacement openings for approximately 100 total annual openings.

Pennsylvania Department of Education